English 1 – Hour 2
25 September 2012
A Brother’s Pride
It is said that you never really appreciate something fully until it is gone.
This is shown in James Hurst’s story, “The Scarlet Ibis”. This story takes place in the Deep South after World War II, and is told through the eyes of “Brother”, one of Hurst’s fictional characters. Brother tells the story of his invalid younger brother, Doodle. In “The Scarlet Ibis” normality comes with a price. Brother’s pride both helps and hurts Doodle.
Brother is ashamed of Doodle’s weaknesses. He always wished for a normal brother: “it was bad enough having an invalid brother, but having one who possibly was not all there was unbearable, so I began to make plans to kill him by smothering him with a pillow” [Pg. 317]. This sentence reveals that Brother didn’t try to put in time to shape Doodle into the brother he wanted. Instead, the only thing he did was to make plans to kill Doodle so that he wouldn’t have an invalid brother. “He was a burden in many ways. The doctor had said that he mustn’t get too excited, too hot, too cold, or too tired, and that he must always be treated gently. A long list of don’ts went with him, all of which I ignored once we got out of the house. To discourage him coming with me, I’d run with him across the ends of the cotton rows and careen him around corners on two wheels. Sometimes I accidently turned him over, but he never told Mama” [Pg. 317]. We can see from this excerpt that Doodle looks up to Brother and enjoys spending time with him, however Brother resents being burdened by Doodle and attempts to flip the go-kart Doodle is being transported in so that he will not be burdened by his company when he goes on outdoor excursions. “This is within me (and with sadness I have watched it n others) a knot of cruelty borne by the stream of love, much as our blood sometimes bears the seed of our destruction, and at times I was mean to Doodle. One day I took him up to... [continues]
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